Pros:Competent, professional operation.
Cons:Rushed certification and Aruba's high prices!
The Bottom Line: As a certification center, I would recommend Red Sail only to those that are really confident about diving. As a diving center, the staff was professional and competent.
In December of 2000, I took my PADI diving certification with Red Sail Sports in Aruba. The course was supposed to take 4 days, but we did it in 2 and a half.
Why, you ask? Well, it wasn't because we were pros.
I had agreed to take the course after my fiance begged me to, but I was a bit uncertain and scared. The first day we met our teacher, an Aruban who had been diving for 15 years, watched the first three videos and took the quizes that follow. I thought to myself "Whoa, hold on here! We haven't read the book yet and we are half way done the course work!" But the message from the teacher was pretty clear that we were going to do this quickly, regardless of how we felt about it. Luckily we were only three in my class so that some things could be done quickly. We spent lunch time in the pool and then were to meet back for our first real dive that afternoon. With a 30 minute break to eat lunch and prepare myself to dive for the first time I was more than overwhelmed. The dive went surprisingly well, but my fiance and I felt like we were rushed throughout the entire day.
Day 2: We watched the last two videos, took the quizes, practiced in the pool and out in the ocean again. By this point we were reaching some of the important skills training and our teacher was just blowing through it all.
Luckily I had overcome my fear by this point and just said "what the hell! The more time I spend on the bottom of the ocean, the better." But my fiance was uncomfortable and talking about quitting. I'm sure he would have felt differently if the instructor had taken his time with us.
Day 3: I convinced my man to give it one more try, as we headed off for our third and fourth dives. And we fell in love! With diving, with the sea, with each other all over again. This was a whole other world that we had only dreamed of before. We passed our tests, fulfilled the skills requirements and completed the certification all before lunch.
Maybe it all worked out for the best. I wasn't given a chance to live out my fear of diving and while I was racing to catch up with the teacher I realized I had a new passion in life, to explore the world below.
Read all 8 Reviews
Write a Review